Literacy in Information and Communication Technology (ICT) is vital in current medical education and practice to; better prepare future physicians for the changing behaviours of the patients and diseases, improve the quality of interventions and health care delivery, find information and change medical teaching practices. A descriptive study was designed to evaluate the effectiveness of the introductory ICT course and find out the factors affecting ICT literacy in medical entrants. A self-administered questionnaire was administered after receiving the informed consent of the students of the first and second batches of Faculty of Medicine, Wayamba University of Sri Lanka. ICT literacy was evaluated by administering a theory and practical based examination. A pre-course examination was held to a selected sub-sample in order to evaluate the effectiveness of the introductory course. Out of the consented students (n=126), 71.4% were females. All the students owned at least one IT equipment and browsed the internet daily. Having school ICT facility (p=0.001) and parental knowledge on ICT (p=0.04) have affected to the ICT literacy of the students while the external courses have not affected at all. The interaction between ICT evaluation marks and academic results are strongly significant. There was a significant improvement in ICT literacy of the students after conducting an introductory ICT course (p=0.001). It is required to increase ICT facilities at school levels and improve the quality of the introductory ICT courses in order to create skillful professionals who can challenge the changing behaviours of the future world.
Keywords: Medical Entrants, Information and Communication Technology, Introductory Course, Medical Education